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MLL Players in NLL Weekend Recap

December 2, 2019 - Major League Lacrosse (MLL) News Release

Boston - With the opening weekend of the NLL season passing by during the holiday weekend, many MLL players returned to action for the first time since MLL Championship Weekend at the beginning of October.

  The headliner of the MLL season, Lyle Thompson, opened up his 2019-20 NLL campaign with a bang as he played his part in the Georgia Swarm's 14-4 victory over the Rochester Knighthawks. Thompson had a hat-trick before the halfway point as he converted a penalty shot with less than five minutes remaining in the second quarter for his third goal. The Chesapeake Bayhawks star finished with seven points (four goals and three assists), Thompson looks prepared to continue his offensive dominance which he consistently displayed throughout the 2019 MLL season.

Fellow Swarm teammate Shayne Jackson was also up to the task for the NLL opening weekend as he also finished the game with a seven point night. Jackson found himself with a hat-trick as well as he completed his with less than three minutes remaining in the second quarter, only shortly after Thompson had put away his third goal. His Atlanta Blaze teammates Randy Staats and Bryan Cole also played a vital role in the Swarm's win as they both finished with three points each, Staats with three assists and Cole with a goal and two assists.

In Friday's opening night showdown between the Saskatchewan Rush and Colorado Mammoth, a few MLL main-stays were able to have a valuable impact on the night's affairs. The 2018 reigning NLL MVP Mark Matthews got off to a hot start for the Rush in their 9-8 victory as he played the role of distributor with a five point game, four of which were assists. His opening goal was the opener of the second quarter and recorded the primary assist on the go ahead goal in the third quarter, which was the final lead change of the game.

In a tight contest, the Mammoth relied upon their goalie Dillon Ward who just came off an MLL campaign which saw him nominated for the Warrior Goalie of the Year Award. Although taking the loss in the game, Ward demonstrated his impact as he was able to turn away 54 of the 63 shots that he faced throughout the 60 minutes. Unfortunate to come away with the loss, the Denver Outlaws goalie was still able to come away with an .857 save percentage, the highest mark among the losing goaltenders from the weekend. His Outlaws and Mammoth teammate Ryan Lee was also strong in the first game of the season as he scored the first goal of the game for the Mammoth and finished with three points on nine shots.

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